Aug 232012
 

Justice

Vincent Simmons has been fighting for an evidentiary hearing for decades. He filed an application for rehearing pro se on May 17, 2011, with the Court of Appeal (Third Circuit) in Lake Charles, Louisiana. (Case number: CW 11-00608) The court did not consider the application and explained the denial of October 13, 2011, almost two months later in writing:

“An application for rehearing from a ruling denying a writ application is not permitted pursuant to Uniform Rules—Courts of Appeal, Rule 2–18.7. Furthermore, this court cannot consider arguments and evidence which have not been presented to the trial court.” (See the Opinion)
According to that Rule (page 24 of 42), a rehearing is considered when the court either “granted a writ application on the merits,” “dismissed an appeal,” or “ruled on the merits of an appeal.”

On August 22, 2012, the Supreme Court of Louisiana denied Vincent Simmons’ Writ Application:

2012-KH-0247 STATE EX REL. VINCENT SIMMONS v. STATE OF LOUISIANA (Parish of Avoyelles)
KNOLL, J., recused.

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Jul 052011
 

Louisiana’s legislators have enacted 402 new laws. Twenty-nine of them concern the legal and penal system in particular.

House Bill (HB) 5/ Act 24 authorizes sheriffs and deputy sheriffs with at least 16 years of active service to purchase their service firearms upon retirement.

House Bill (HB) 55/ Act 26  prohibits certain sex offenders from using or accessing social networking websites, chat rooms, and peer-to-peer networks.

House Bill (HB) 187/ Act 30 exempts sex offenders from provision that provides, without charge, state identification cards to persons of certain age.

Senate Bill (SB) 18/ Act 41 provides relative to the chief of police in the town of Simmesport. (8/15/11)

House Bill (HB) 131/ Act 74 amends the crime of failure to register to include the failure to comply with sex offender drivers’ license and state identification card requirements.

House Bill (HB) 216/ Act 83 amends provisions of law regarding probable cause determinations.

House Bill (HB) 235/ Act 87 provides that the 24-hour stay following mistrial applies to writ application for review by all courts with appellate jurisdiction.

House Bill (HB) 264/ Act 91 creates the crime of unlawful production, manufacturing, distribution, or possession of law enforcement badges.

Senate Bill (SB) 202/ Act 153 provides relative to the membership, duties and operations of the parole board and pardon board.

House Bill (HB) 14/ Act 159 provides relative to the carrying of weapons by federal judges.

House Bill (HB) 72/ Act 161 provides for the training of all chiefs of police.

House Bill (HB) 106/ Act 168 Requires reporting from providers of home incarceration or electronic monitoring services to DPS&C.

House Bill (HB) 414/ Act 186 revises and consolidates statutes providing for the diminution of sentence.

House Bill (HB) 111/ Act 218 provides with respect to court-ordered probation supervision fees.

House Bill (HB) 121/ Act 219 increases probation and parole fees by ten dollars.

House Bill (HB) 122/ Act 220 provides for the imposition of a fee to defray the cost of presentence investigations.

House Bill (HB) 116/ Act 250 prohibits the destruction of biological evidence collected pursuant to the investigation of certain criminal offenses.

House Bill (HB) 129/ Act 252 provides the La. Supreme Court Committee on Bar Admissions with access to criminal history information of bar examination applicants.

House Bill (HB) 138/ Act 253 provides with respect to eligibility for parole consideration for certain elderly inmates.

House Bill (HB) 285/ Act 262 increases the amount of monetary compensation for wrongful convictions.

House Bill (HB) 374/ Act 282  provides relative to the powers granted to elected police chiefs in municipalities governed by the Lawrason Act.

House Bill (HB) 392/ Act 283 provides with respect to criminal background checks for persons seeking employment.

House Bill (HB) 401/ Act 284 increases penalties for domestic abuse battery.

House Bill (HB) 416/ Act 285 amends timing of parole eligibility for certain offenders.

Senate Bill (SB) 182/ Act 312 prohibits any offender sentenced to the legal custody of the Department of Public Safety and Corrections to establish an account on any Internet-based social networking website. (8/15/11)

Senate Bill (SB) 232/ Act 318 provides for registry and notification by sex offenders and a sexual assault task force.

House Bill (HB) 305/ Act 349 provides for the reduction of a defendant’s sentence for substantial assistance in an investigation.

House Bill (HB) 353/ Act 366 provides for a uniform fines and costs assessment form for criminal cases.

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Jul 012011
 

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal has signed Senate Bill 182 (Act 312) by Senators Francis C. Thompson and A. G. Crowe. It is effective August 15, 2011, and prohibits any offender sentenced to the legal custody of the Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections to establish an account on any Internet-based social networking website.

R.S. 14:405 reads:

 

§405. Unlawful establishment of accounts on Internet-based social networking websites by inmates

 

A. It shall be unlawful for any offender who is incarcerated and who is sentenced to the legal custody of the Department of Public Safety and Corrections to establish or maintain an account on any Internet-based, social networking website.

 

B. “Social networking website” means an Internet-based website that has any of the following capabilities:

 

(1) Allows users to create web pages or profiles about themselves that are available to the general public or to any other users.

 

(2) Offers a mechanism for communication among users, such as a forum, chat room, electronic mail, or instant messaging.

 

C. Whoever violates any of the provisions of this Section shall be fined not more than five hundred dollars, or imprisoned not more than thirty days, or both.

 

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May 192011
 

(c) Patrick Semansky, The Associated Press, LSP inmates arrive at Elayn Hunt Correctional Center in St. Gabriel on May 9, 2011.

(c) Patrick Semansky, The Associated Press, LSP inmates arrive at Elayn Hunt Correctional Center in St. Gabriel on May 9, 2011.

Vincent Simmons, 85188, is temporarily housed at the Elayn Hunt Correctional Center  because the Louisiana State Penitentiary (LSP) has been evacuated partially since May 9, 2011, due to the (potential) flooding along the Mississippi River. To locate a LSP inmate by phone, please call 225-383-4580.  

According to projections by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the river will crest at 64.5 feet (19,66 m) on Sunday, May 22, 2011 at

(c) Patrick Semansky, The Associated Press, A camp at the LSP alongside an inner levee on May 9, 2011

(c) Patrick Semansky, The Associated Press, A camp at the LSP alongside an inner levee on May 9, 2011

the Louisiana State Prison (Angola). Twelve miles of levees ranging from 68 feet (20,73 m) to 72 feet (21,95 m) high surround the 18,000 acres prison ground (comparable in size with Manhattan) of seven formerly consolidated plantations. There are patrols around the clock at Angola. Some inmates remain there to provide support for the facility explains the website of the Louisiana Department of Corrections (DOC). 

Since Hurricane Katrina and other natural disasters, the Louisiana DOC has some practice in transporting large groups of inmates from one facility to another. But the state’s oldest and only maximum security prison “Angola” with a population of 5,108 detainees has never been evacuated before. It is a historical event and something new to all parties. 

The Louisiana Department of Corrections  informs: 

  • Visitation and outside activities at Louisiana State Penitentiary, Elayn Hunt Correctional Center, Avoyelles Correctional Center, Dixon Correctional Institute and Rayburn Correctional Center   are cancelled until further notice.
  • Court hearings for DOC offenders assigned to state correctional facilities scheduled for May 9th – June 17, 2011 have been continued and will be rescheduled at a later date.
  • Parole Board hearings scheduled for May 10th – June 3rd, 2011 have been postponed and will be rescheduled at a later date.
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May 182011
 

On recommendation of the Judiciary Commission of Louisiana, the Louisiana Supreme Court ordered on May 10, 2011, that Justice of the Peace Roger Adams, Sr., of Ward 7/ Simmesport, 12th District, Parish of Avoyelles, State of Louisiana, be suspended without pay for one year, followed by a two-year period of probation, attend the Attorney General’s justice of the peace training every year until his term of probation is completed, reimburse and pay to the Judiciary Commission of Louisiana the sum of US$532.58. 

The court opines that Adams violated Canons 1, 2 (A), and 3 (A) (1) of the Code of Judicial Conduct, and Article V, Section 25 (C) of the Louisiana Constitution 

Adams, an African-American non-lawyer and Democrat has been in office for eight years. The first time the Louisiana Supreme Court suspended him was in June of 2007 (In re: Adams, 07-0426 (La. 6/29/07), 959 So.2d 474). The justice of the peace admitted he had issued arrest warrants for two persons for a parade permit violation and having set excessively high bonds in retaliation for their political opposition to the mayor of the Town of Simmesport, James T. “Boo” Fontenot (July 7, 1951 – August 4, 2008) 

In April 2008, an inmate at the Avoyelles Women’s Correctional Center in Simmesport asked Adams to sign a judgment of her and her husband’s divorce. Although justices of the peace do not have jurisdiction (La. Code Civ. Proc. art. 4913) in such matters, Adams signed the document and received a US$10.00 “notary fee” in return.  Further mistakes were:

Adams uses the Justice Court Manual prepared by the Louisiana Attorney General to assist justices of the peace in the performance of their duties, but he also admits that he made a “hasty decision.” 

The Louisiana Supreme Court ruled, “Adams’s [sic] lack of familiarity with even the most basic rules pertaining to the exercise of his authority in a civil matter constitutes serious misconduct.”

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May 102011
 

Emergency for Louisiana_May 2011

Emergency for Louisiana in May 2011

On May 6, 2011, the President of the United States of America declared emergency for Louisiana due to the threat of a flood disaster that might equal the catastrophe of 1927 when “the Mississippi River remained at flood stage for a record 153 days.” .

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced that federal aid has been made available to the State of Louisiana to supplement state and local response efforts in the area struck by flooding beginning on April 25, 2011, and continuing.

Affected are the parishes of Avoyelles, Ascension, Assumption, Catahoula, Concordia, East Carroll, Iberia, Iberville, LaSalle, Madison, Pointe Coupee, East Baton Rouge, St. Charles, St. James, St. John, St. Landry, St. Martin, St. Mary, Tensas, Terrebonne, West Baton Rouge, and West Feliciana (where the Mississippi River surrounds the Angola Prison on three sides).

THREE VIDEOS:

http://youtu.be/qYqGF227GkU Video by Christianna Garrett, May 7, 2011


Slideshow by Charles Addison Riddle, III, whose grandfather was the Red Cross Chairman during the great flood of 1927.

http://youtu.be/McjgSp9zlfQ Great Mississippi Flood of 1927 (CNN film)

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